Do Americans Want Gun Control?
In the wake of the horrific shooting in Orlando, the topic of gun control has once again been forced upon us. It seems like we only discuss the topic when a large number of people die at the hands of a gun. Yet, we constantly do nothing about it. City after city, state after state, the numbers go higher and higher. This time, it was 50 dead. What number will it take to change the gun culture?
You might think that this issue is too polarizing to find agreement on. You would be wrong. According to a poll conducted by the Pew Research Group, there is some agreement between Democrats and Republicans on certain gun control proposals. As you'll see in the chart below, 79% of Republicans and 88% of Democrats want background check at all gun shows and private sales. 79% of Republicans and 81% of Democrats want better laws aimed at keeping weapons out of the hands of the mentally ill. Nearly 50% of Republicans and 70% of Democrats want a ban on assault-style weapons. And while it isn't covered in this survey, I can't imagine a majority of Americans wouldn't be in favor of banning people on a no-fly or terrorist watch list from buying a weapon. So why isn't anything being done?
Many people point to the President and Congress, and certainly they must shoulder some of the blame. But it's time to look in the mirror. The real problem is 'us'. We are allowing this to happen. We allow our elected officials to be influenced by the single biggest lobby in the country. The gun lobby. I'm all for standing up for my right to bear arms. I'm a gun owner myself. But I'm done pretending this country doesn't have a gun problem. Who will be the courageous few who step across the line and do what's right for our country?